. i pledge allegiance to the flag of the united states of america, and to the republic for which it stands, one nation under god, indivisible, with liberty and justice for all. the presiding officer: the clerk will read a communication to the senate. the clerk: washington, d.c., march 17, 2011. to the senate: under the provisions of rule 1, paragraph 3, of the standing rules of the senate, i hereby appoint the honorable tom udall, a senator from the state of new mexico, to perform the duties of the chair. signed: daniel k. inouye, president pro tempore. mr. mcconnell: mr. president? the presiding officer: the republican leader is recognized. mr. mcconnell: it was a great honor to have thad austin of murfreesboro, tennessee, provide the opening prayer this morning. i -- i thank him for his wise words. i first met the reverend austin as an alma mater at the university in willmore, kentucky, when i visited there in 2007. it is to engage the world and serve the world through public service. our guest chaplain has pursued that mission with great success. maybe it is a family calling.